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PART 4 LANDSCAPE DESCRIPTION

Part 4 LANDSCAPE DESCRIPTION



4.1 Introduction

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In this section, the landscape of the river corridor landscape is described in terms of its constituent elements (landform and geology, water features, vegetation cover, climatic influences, land uses, cultural features) which combine to create the landscape character. Special features are identified for each area both natural and cultural. Relevant existing landscape description frameworks are noted for reference. The description is supported by a map and photographic images.

The landscape quality attributes set out in Part 2 of this report are then applied to each area. A composite quality rating is given at the end of this section.

Finally natural character is assessed in more detail, with identification of threats to natural character and opportunities that would enhance it.

4.2 Approach

4.21 Developing a Landscape Description Framework

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The first step in describing the landscape is to design a suitable framework. The unit of description is the landscape character area. These are defined within the limits of the viewshed. The following approach to developing the framework was adopted:

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1. The land types study by Ian Lynn of Landcare Research provided the primary basis for determining boundaries between landscape character areas.

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2. The ecological regions and district boundaries were overlaid (maps supplied by the Department of Conservation)

3. Existing landscape character frameworks were reviewed for comparison as well as for descriptive information. The following frameworks were referred to:

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• Otago Regional Landscape Study by Boffa Miskell 2000

• Otago Conservation Management Strategy, Appendix 3 Landscape

Analysis

• Lower Clutha Hydro Electric Study, Bennett 1984

• draft Central Otago District Rural Landscape Study, LA42006

• Central Otago Blueprint Landscape Study, Isthmus Group 2004-5

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These studies provided a useful collective guide to how to divide the landscape into landscape character areas as a number of boundaries between units overlapped, but none on its own was considered a relevant framework to use for this study. Most were too broad in scale to be useful.

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4. 'Landscape character areas' were defined, mapped and named using aJl the above information combined with knowledge of the district based on site investigations and photographic record. Within the river corridor landscape the descriptive unit is the 'river section'- sections of the primary setting with homogenous character. These were further divided into 'reaches' - a finer division of landscape character along the river corridor.

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4.22 Landscape Description and Assessment

The landscape for each section is described objectively in terms of landform and geology and physical processes, river morphology. climatic influences, vegetation cover and ecological processes, land use and cultural elements and cultural processes. This description is reasonably comprehensive but is still only a broad description. Information sources listed in 4.21 as well PNA Programme Reports', geological maps and references. promotional material collected from information centres, various texts describing the Clutha river catchment, and personal observation supported by an extensive photographic record of the river corridor (aerial obliques and ground-based).

Other frameworks for describing the landscape are referred to by identifying the relevant units within which each river section/landscape character area lies. These are for reference and to help build the mental picture of the area concerned.

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Features. sites and areas that are special or significant in some way were identified. These are both natural and cultural. These are identified only from existing inventories (district plan, RAPs2, gleaned from promotional material and information brochures, significant geological sites inventory, DOC Special Places in OeMS) and augmented by personal observation.

The reaches of the river are identified and a brief description of their distinguishing characteristics is given. It is not possible to provide a full landscape description at this level. of detail as not enough field work has been done. It is expected this would be done with further study of individual river sections.

Aesthetic qualities are explored by means of an assessment of landscape quality attributes. An overall composite rating is given at the end of this section. It applies more to the wider landscape than just the river section. This rating is indicative for the river sections. Not enough field work has been done to be able to be definitive. It is expected the ratings might be altered with further field work and analysis.

The final section examines in more detail the natural character of each section. Elements and processes contributing to natural character are identified and described, as are those that detract from it or weaken it. Threats to natural character and opportunities to enhance it are listed.

The landscape character area. river section and river reaches are defined on an accompanying map. Location of special features and sites, important routes, and areas of significance are also shown on the map along with important highway views identified in the previous report defining the river landscape corridor.

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4.23 Explanation of Layout of Description Pages

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A standard approach to setting out the landscape description and assessment information has been devised and is as follows:

key characterising negative)

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1 Protected Natural Area Programme Reports - these have been prepared for the Lindis/Pisa/Dunstan; Maniototo; Manorbum; Old Man. Umbrella and Waipori Districts. They contain information on Recommended Areas for Protection (RAPs).

2 See Footnote 1.

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Description: objective description of the landform and geology, river morphology,
physical processes, climatic influences, vegetation cover and ecological
processes, land use and cultural elements and cultural processes. One to
three pages of photos are set out to illustrate the description.
Reaches: these are identified and named and a brief description given
Special these are briefly described in a summary way, as greater detail is
Places: contained on the map for each section.
Land Type: the land types developed by Lynn relevant to each section are identified
ERD: the ecological region and district each section falls into are identified with
a one sentence description of the boundary rationale
OCMSLCA: the landscape character areas set out in the Otago Conservation
Management Strategy are identified and listed
ORLSLCA: the landscape character areas set out in the Otago Regional Landscape
Study are identified and listed [

Quality Attributes

The quality attributes of naturalness, distinctiveness/vividness/memorability; legibility; coherence; complexity/diversity/mystery; open character; openness and solitude are applied one by one to each whole landscape character area with a focus on the river section where possible. A low to moderate to high scale rating is assigned.

This section is completed by reviewing all ratings and giving an overall landscape quality rating.

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Natural Character

Description and analysis of natural character. Identification of threats and opportunities.

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A map is prepared tor each section. The map depicts the extent of the landscape character areas; and the section and reach boundaries. Special. and significant features are mapped and described. These include discreet sites of features as well as areas and important routes, such as walking tracks. Important views of the river identified in the Landscape Corridor Report are also mapped.

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4.3 Landscape Character Areas and River Sections

Maps 4.1 to 4.3 in this section show the landscape character areas (LeAs) and river sections defined in this study.

Nine LeAs were defined and the river further divided into 22 reaches:

LeA/River Section Name

Reach

Brief Description

Sandy Point to Maori Point

Sandy Point to River1ands

River1ands to Maori Point

River incised in open outwash terrace lands, relatively undeveloped, patches of kanuka, remnant short tussock, impressive meander loops, change imminent due to subdivision for lifestyle blocks and vineyard development

Maori Point to Cromwell

Maori Point to The Pines

The Pines to Bendigo

Bendigo to Devils Creek

Devils Creek to Cromwell Gorge

Upper section -rtver incised in open outwash terrace lands, relatively undeveloped although irrigated areas nearby, patches of kanuka, pine tree plantings, Lindis confluence with only inland area of open braided floodplain; delta area with important birdlife at head of Lake Dunstan; middle to lower reaches flooded to make Lake Dunstan which abuts rocky foot slopes of Dunstan Range including distinctive knobby kanuka-clad Bendigo area on one side; and laps mostly open developed outwash plain terraces on other side including dry land terrace DOC reserve; valley contains spectacular outwash terrace landforms .. Middle to lower valley being intensively developed for vineyards and orchards as well as lifestyle blo.ckl). Southern valley part of semi-arid inland basin area, quintessential Central .'otago. Town of Cromwell at south end.

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Cromwell-Dunstan Gorge

Impressive large rocky antecedent gorge flooded by Clyde Dam at southeast end to form winding narrow lake. Extensive landslides, rock buttresses. Relatively natural landscape used for extensive grazing but modifications due to hydro works are present, eg Caimmuir stabilization structure, 'scalping' of spur ends above new highway

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Clyde to Alexandra

River inCised in outwash plains in basin, basin floor highly developed for orchards and irrigated pasture; semi-arid climate, very dry grey-brown rocky hills with prolific tor development; towns of Clyde and Alexandra at either end, River extensively willow lined. Eamscleugh tailings. a prominent feature.

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Roxburgh Gorge

Alexandra to Butchers Point

Butchers Point to Gorge Creek

Gorge Creek to The Bend

Another large spectacular antecedent gorge cut through rocky fault block hill range; semi-arid, very rocky, sparse grassland and herb cover; highly natural character due to mostly extensive grazing use with one large conservation area, best example of dry land ecosystems in NZ. Gorge flooded by Roxburgh Dam at southeast vend to form narrow winding!

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The Bend to The Dam

lake. Gold mining relicts present.

Roxburgh Dam to Roxburgh

Similar to Clyde-Alex basin in character, more enclosed, oval shaped depression overlooked by impressive high steep eastern scarp of Old Man Range; outwash terraces in larger steps on east side of basin.

Includes Roxburgh Dam area and dredged area opposite town of Roxburgh at rocky 'pinch point' at south end

Roxburgh to Ettrick

Roxburgh to Hercules Flat

Island Hill to Pinders Pond

Pinders Pond to Dumbarton

Dumbarton to Teviot Teviot to Ettrick

Rocky pinch point at north end with stretch of river alternating rocky parts including isolated rocky conical hill and pockets of alluvium; opens out into wide oval basin similarly intensively developed with orcharding and irrigated pasture; more moderate climate but still dry. River channel extensively willow lined. Overlooked by high eastern scarp of Old Man Range to west and enclosed by more gently sloping deeply dissected western edge of the Teviot hills-Lammerlaws block.

Ettrick to Minzion Bum

River flows hard against low but steep rocky scarp of Moa Flat Hills, with narrow valley of outwash plain to other side, similarly developed but more for pastoral use. River straighter through here and willow lined.

Minzion Bum to Beaumont

Minzion Bum to Rigney

Rigney to McCunns Beach

McCunns Beach to Beaumont

River cuts deep valley through steep rocky hill country; area with highest rainfall along the river; widespread kanuka (mostly sprayed now); distinctive area Rigney to Craig Flat of isolated rocky conical hills and pockets of alluvium. Gold mining history has only footbridge across the river. Rock gardens are a feature of stretch of river at Beaumont end as well as large rock bluff area and commercial pine plantation. Millennium track (disused railway) runs parallel to river.

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LEGEND

Areas outside the Viewshed

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~y' Area within the Viewshed

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Boundary between Landscape Character Areas, and

River Sections within the

River Landscape Corridor

Reach Boundaries

MAORI POINT Landscape Character Area TOCROMWELL and Section Name

I Sandy Point Reach Name Riverlands

PRELIMINARY LANDSCAPE CHARACTER AREAS RIVERSECTtONs AND REACHES MAP 4.1 SANDY POINT TO CLYDE

CLUTHA MATA AU PARKWAY PROJECT

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LEGEND

Areas outside the Viewshed

s: \

.--jfr--< Area within the Viewshed

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Boundary between Landscape Character Areas, and

River Sections within the

River Landscape Corridor

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Reach Boundaries

Cl VOE TO Landsca pe Character Area ALEXANDRA and Section Name

Reach Name

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PRELIMINARY LANDSCAPE CHARACTER .AREAS !RIVER SECTIONS AND REACHES 'MAP 4.2 CLYDE TO RIGNEY

CLUTHA MATA AU PARKWAY PROJECT

I"D;~<;;~ June 2006

II II: C I-li! T I!CT

Rigney to

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lIEGEND

Areas outside the Viewshed

Area within the Viewshed

Boundary between Landscape Character Areas, and

River Sections within the

River Landscape Corridor

Reach Boundaries

Landscape Character Area and Section name

Reach name

PRELIMINARY

LANDSCAPE CHARACTER AREAS RIVER SECTIONS AND REACHES MAP 4.3 RilGNEY TO THE 5.EA

CLUTHA MATA AU PARKWAY PROJECT

!~~.n~~ June 2006

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References:

Central Otago District Council Plan 'Central Otago District Plan' Amended 2000 Vol 1 and 2

Department of Conservation 1994 'Lindis, Pisa and Dunstan Ecological Districts - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Bruce D L, Rance B D, Roozen D A and Grove P)

Department of Conservation 1994 'Waipori Ecological District - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Carter J)

Department of Conservation 1994 'Maniototo Ecological District - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Grove P)

Department of Conservation 1992 'Manorburn Ecological District - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Fagan Band Pillai D)

Department of Conservation 1988 'Umbrella Ecological District - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Dickinson K J M)

Department of Conservation 'Otago Conservation Management Strategy'

Department of Lands and Survey 1986 'Old Man Ecological District - Survey Report for the Protected Natural Areas Programme' (prepared by Brimley C F, Stirling M N, and Manning M S)

ECNZ Ltd July 1989 'Cromwell Gorge Landslides"

Geological and Nuclear Sciences 2003 'Geology of the Murihiku Area 1:250000' compiled by Turnbull I M and Allibone A H

Geological and Nuclear Sciences 2000 'Geology of the Wakatipu Area 1:250000' ed. Turnbull I M

Geological Society of New Zealand Misc. Pub 99 ' Inventory and Maps of Important Geological Sites and Landforms in the Otago Region' eds. Hayward B Wand Kenny J A

Lonie I M 1984 'A History of Water Resource Management in the Clutha River;' Otago Catchment Board and Regional Water Board

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Lynn I 2006 (unpublished) 'Land Types of the Clutha River Corridor' Landcare Research Lincoln McKellar I C 1959 'Pleistocene DepOSits of the Upper Clutha Valley, Otago, NZ'in NZ Journal of Geology and Geophysics 3: pp. 432-60

Newsome P F L 1987 'Vegetative Cover of New Zealand"

NZ Geological Survey 'Geological Map of New Zealand - Sheet 22 Wakatipu scale 1:250000" DSIR rep 1985

NZ Geological Survey 'Geological Map of New Zealand - Sheet 22 Wakatipu scale 1:250000" DSIR rep 1985

Otago Regional Council 2001 'Climate of Otago'

Otago Regional Water Board 1980 'Clutha Catchment Water Allocation Plan - A Land and Water Resource Inventory of the Clutha Catchment' Vol 1 and 2

Peat N and Patrick B 1999 'Wild Central- Discovering the Natural History of Central Otago" University of Otago Press rep 2001

Young D and Foster B 1986 "Faces of the River- NZ's Living Water" TVNZ Publishing